Dear visitors of
my name is Rainer Lehrhuber. I am a teacher of
the Alexander Technique and I would like to
introduce myself to you.
My First Contact with the Alexander Technique
My first contact with the Alexander Technique
was in a group with seven participants and a
teacher. This is rather unusual, as Alexander
Technique is traditionally held in private
The teacher made a great impression on me: He
had a very calm, clear and open presence. I
noticed his appearance particularly. I had never
seen a man with such an "upright posture" before.
His hands seemed expanded in a relaxed way. I
had no idea, how he did it, and I wondered
involuntarily whether the strong upright posture
was somewhat exaggerated and exhausting. At the
same time he moved, despite his 50 years,
completely effortless, easy and simple.
A teacher-student ratio of 1:7 is very
inconvenient and I could not understand much of
what happened in the course. But the teacher
dealt for 10 or 15 minutes only with me. We
practiced walking and in between standing.
Almost all the while, his hands touched my body
very easily - sometimes on the back, then the
shoulders, and very often my neck. He also gave
brief verbal instructions and explanations. The
result of the procedure was extremely amazing.
The teacher always seemed to work towards that I
“do less”. The tension in my body fell off; my
joints could move more easily, my whole body
broadened and the standing and walking felt more
effortless than I knew from everyday life. In
between, the lightness wore off when I was
walking. The teacher noticed this; we stopped,
adjusted again and went on.
This experience intrigued me, but at the same
time, I felt also somewhat anxious because the
new felt very strange. Curiosity and fascination
outweighed however clearly, and both have not
left me to this day.
From the First Lessons to the Teacher
Then I took about a dozen of individual lessons
in a period of about six months. The impressions
described above confirmed and deepened. The
lessons were all about only basic activities
such as laying, sitting, standing or walking.
The "working on the chair" appeared to be
particularly important to the teacher: standing
in front of the chair, sitting down, sitting and
getting up again. What actually sounds
monotonous became a great adventure. The outward
simplicity allowed us to quickly penetrate to
the core of things, namely the way I am turned
physically and mentally to everyday tasks, and
thus my life. The teacher invited me repeatedly
to "do" new things, whereas the term "do" was
not entirely accurate. It was more about
stopping that too much of "doing". Surprisingly,
the movements became easier, more quiet and
natural as a result, body and concentration
became less tense, and the perception broadened.
I quickly realized that there was much more
potential in me than I had previously suspected,
and that the Alexander Technique offered
approaches to discover this part of my
opportunities. An unbridled eagerness to
experiment was in me, as I had not known it
since my childhood.
Sometimes I felt strange with the easiest way of
doing things, and at first I was sometimes
impatient because the positive effects seemed to
vanish again in the days after the sessions.
After a few months, however, the sustained
positive effects of the lessons could no longer
be overlooked - the confidence in the path grew.
About six months after my first private lesson,
it was irrefutably clear to me that I wanted get
into the Alexander Technique as far as possible,
and another six months later I began the
three-year education for an Alexander Technique
teacher with Mary Holland,
which I graduated according to the guidelines of ATVD (Alexander Technique Association Germany).
What does the Alexander Technique represent
for me today?
As I write this, I practice the Alexander
Technique. I can feel the pull of the screen and
the keyboard drawing me forward and down. My
body would thus become narrow and my perception
and concentration as well. I know both these
tendencies, but I also know the "antidote".
Part of my attention adjusts me in the
background permanently mentally and physically.
I make sure that my neck stays free, and to
maintain the relation of head / neck / torso
dynamic. I feel the contact of the feet with the
floor and the sitting bones with the chair. I
know I must not react to the pull forward and
down by direct muscular action, i.e. I must not
give myself the instruction to sit upright.
Rather, the question arises how and where I can
let go, so that the desired dynamic is updated
repeatedly and by itself.
The organization of head / neck / torso is
primary. If this is done, the perception shifts
towards the arms and the hands. The arms flow
from the back, and touching the buttons is not a
gripping motion, but the fingers let go to the
front at the stroke and lengthen. The constant
view to the screen threatens to fix my attention.
My body remembers that concentration is not an
oppressive, but a broadening experience, and
aligns itself accordingly...
While constantly bearing all this in mind, I
write this text in parallel.
The Alexander Technique is not limited to
exercise periods, and there are actually no
exercises. Daily life and its operations are the
exercise. There is no separation between the
Alexander Technique and the life. The Alexander
Technique is concerned with the essence of the
way of life: What is relaxation and how does it
work? What is concentration and how does it work?
When can clear perception take place? What is
the role of thoughts and feelings? What hinders
my development? How can I control myself
skilfully? These are the central questions
handled by the Alexander Technique in theory and
especially in practice. From the first
individual lesson, these issues are the focus -
not intellectually, but at the level of
experience. I have often quarrelled with the
word "Technique" in Alexander Technique and many
colleagues feel the same. The Alexander
Technique is indeed very methodical, but the
term "Technique" has for me a rather mechanical
and harsh aftertaste. In contrast, I perceive
the approach of F.M. Alexander as something very
natural and soft. The idea is to let the whole
human unfold organically in his physicality, his
thinking, feeling and perception. The Alexander
Technique does not offer a special technique (as
opposed to other possible techniques) for
standing, sitting or walking, but invites us to
a form of movement, being there and life, which
according to our biological and intellectual
standard equipment lies naturally within us.
Before I turned to the Alexander Technique, I
was an athlete and later I worked many years in
the music industry. Also, I intensively deal
with the Far Eastern art of movement.
As an Alexander Technique teacher, I now work
with people suffering from stress-related
ailments who want to bring more ease and balance
in their everyday life and work. In addition, my
special attention goes to people, who depend on
the high coordination ability, such as musicians,
actors, dancers and athletes. In my work, I
consider it important to give space and
suggestions for personal growth. I would like to
invite the people who come to me to deal
consciously with their body in a light, relaxed
way and without pressure.
I look forward to meeting you and to find out in
a personal conversation with you how I can
support you with the Alexander Technique the
best. You can reach me by phone: +49 89/ 32 494
With kind regards